The Lucy Spacecraft is asmall satellite mission to explore the Trojan asteroids located in the Lagrangian points of Jupiter in the outer solar system. It is a collaboration between the European Space Agency and the Japanese Space Agency (JAXA). The mission is is set to explore two Trojans: 617 Patroclus and 624 Hektor. The spacecraft carries a disc made of lab-grown diamonds for its L’TES instrument
This article explain how a global team of scientists and engineers had to troublshoot the deployment of the massive solar panel arrays after the spacecraft was launched and in orbit a million miles away.
Troubleshooting issues is key in any Engineering project, as is showcased in this article on the recently deployed Lucy spacecraft charted to explore the Trojan asteroids of Jupiter.
Space has been a unique frontier for such troubleshooting of problems as was exemplified to begin with during the Apollo 13 mission (remember – Houston, we have a problem!).
Albeit we could resolve the issue with Apollo 13 (gravity assist fly around the moon), and fix issues with the Hubble vision by sending manned crew via the space shuttle some of our endeavors like JSWT and now the Lucy Spacecraft make it impossible for manned interventions and have to be fixed remotely.
At Numorpho Cybernetic Systems (NUMO), our mission is to be able to simulate situations using the virtual environment of digital threads and digital twins so that teams can collaborate to fix issues faced during deployment with a real time understanding of the situation as it develops. This enables us to appropriately add mechanisms in place to account for future conditions.
Our Digital Twine reference architecture has been configured for different use cases and can be used as a blueprint to plug in synthetic modules to simulate cause and effect to ascertain consequences real time. Such simulations could also be run a priori, thus creating a trained basis for Actionable Intelligence for fixing problems when they arise.
ON ANOTHER NOTE: We had used the James Web Space Telescope in our first Internship Cohort in the Summer of 2022 where the students modeled the telescope whilst understanding the science of the telescope and its complicated deployment procedures. For our next cohort in Summer 2023, we will use the Lucy spacecraft with its two solar arrays as the central project for their thesis.